A table tennis robot can be a really useful training aid, especially if you have your own table at home. I actually saved up money from a paper-round and bought myself the best table tennis robot I could afford when I was 15 years old!
But table tennis robots come in a variety of different shapes and sizes (and prices). It can be difficult to know what you need and to decide whether it’s worth paying twice as much money for a better model.
In this post, I’ll be looking at the best table tennis robots currently available. In particular, I’ll focus on the most popular brands and models such as; Butterfly Amicus, Power Pong, Y&T, Newgy Robo-Pong, and iPong.
This post was originally written in May 2016 but was updated in August 2019 to keep it up-to-date with the latest releases.
The 5 Best Table Tennis Robots
Here are the five best table tennis robots currently available to buy…
- Butterfly Amicus Prime (Power Pong 5000)
- Power Pong 3001
- Y&T S-27
- Newgy Robo-Pong 2055
- iPong Trainer Motion
They range massively in price from $2,179 (£1,853.99) for a Butterfly Amicus Prime, all the way down to just $199.95 (£199.99) for an iPong Trainer Motion.
1. Butterfly Amicus Prime Table Tennis Robot
- Price: $2,179 or £1,853
The Butterfly Amicus Prime is, I think, the most expensive table tennis robot money can buy. It’s probably also the best, though!
Butterfly released their current range of Amicus table tennis robots back in 2013, with the; Basic, Advance and Professional models. In 2018, they made a few updates. They are now called the; Start, Expert and Prime.
These “three-wheel” table tennis robots have really changed things and are now seen as the gold standard. Only Butterfly Amicus robots (and Power Pong robots – more on them later) have this “three-wheel” design.
The coolest thing about the new Amicus Prime is that it’s controlled via a Bluetooth connection to the Amicus app (iOS or Android). That makes it so easy to customise and control your robot training.
The second coolest thing about the Amicus Prime is this promo video…
I really want to have a go on one of these and see if they live up to the hype! The Amicus Prime can feed up to ten balls per exercise and you can program in and save an unlimited number of different exercises (based on the storage of your mobile/tablet).
Another cool feature of the Butterfly Amicus Prime is the variable amount of spin you can apply to the ball. With most robots, you just set which spin you would like and then it does that. With this robot, you can actually tell it to give you heavy topspin, or medium topspin, or light topspin!
I also like the way they have built one robot (Amicus) with three different models (Start, Expert and Prime) that you can switch and change between. The robot is actually the same for all three models. It’s the control panel that changes between models and the control panel gives you the ability to get the robot to do all the complicated stuff!
Buy a Butterfly Amicus Prime…
Interestingly, Butterfly get their Amicus robots made by a third-party factory in Hungary. And that factory produces an “own-brand” version of their robots too, under the name ‘Power Pong‘.
So, if you want to buy the Butterfly Amicus Prime, and you aren’t fussed about the Butterfly branding, then buy a Power Pong 5000 and save yourself $330!
- Plus… you can get an extra $100 off with my unique code: BL5000
That makes the Power Pong 5000 a massive $430 cheaper than the Butterfly Amicus Prime! You’d be mad to choose the $2,179 Amicus Prime over a $1,749 Power Pong 5000.
Unfortunately, Power Pong robots are currently only available in the US and Canada.
2. Power Pong 3001 Table Tennis Robot
- Price: $1,749
Since we’re talking about Power Pong table tennis robots, how could I not mention the Power Pong 3001?
This is the same robot as the popular Butterfly Amicus Professional, which Butterfly have now stopped selling (it was replaced by the Amicus Prime). And the 3001 is the improved 2018 version of the 3000.
The Power Pong 3001 is very similar to the Power Pong 5000 (and Butterfly Amicus Prime) just without the Bluetooth connection to the app. So, if you want a top-of-the-range robot but you aren’t interested in connecting it to your smartphone or tablet, the Power Pong 3001 is a great choice.
It’s almost $500 cheaper than the Butterfly Amicus Prime and yet has most of the same features.
That means you get the incredible 3-wheel design. It can produce a variety of different spins within a single pre-programmed drill. And you can create and save up to 99 different drills. It’s just like doing practice drills with a real human partner!
And I love the fact that these robots can create spin serves that actually replicate what you would receive in a game.
Buy a Power Pong 3001…
3. Y&T S-27 Table Tennis Robot
- Price: $1,319 or £1,450
Y&T robots were the best available 10-15 years ago. However, since the release of the Butterfly and Power Pong three-wheel robots 5 years ago, they have fallen out of favour a little.
But Y&T continues to make a range of well-known and long-lasting table tennis robots. The S-27 is the most similar to the Amicus and Power Pong robots because it has two heads and four wheels – which means it can create two different spins during the same drill.
It’s worth knowing that this robot is also sold as the…
These table tennis robots are all identical. The only thing that changes is the brand sticker on the side of the machine!
Here’s a video of the S-27 in action…
I do like Y&T table tennis robots. In fact, it was a Y&T robot that I bought myself when I was a teenager. But in 2019, the Power Pong robots are just quite a bit better and similarly priced.
Y&T need to drop the prices of their robots if they want to compete on value for money going forward.
Buy a Y&T S-27…
- From Megaspin (USA) for $1,495
- From Amazon (USA) for $1,499
- From Amazon (UK) for $1,388
- From Bribar (UK) for £1,450
But, if you’re thinking about buying a Y&T table tennis robot, I would strongly recommend going for one of the newer “three-wheel” Power Pong robots instead.
- Power Pong 5000 ($1,749 – save $100 with the code “BL5000”)
- Power Pong 3001 ($1,749 – save $100 with the code “BL3001”)
- Power Pong 2001 ($1,249 – save $50 with the code “BL2001”)
4. Newgy Robo-Pong 2055 Table Tennis Robot
- Price: $999 or £894
Newgy Robo-Pong table tennis robots are very well-known and popular, especially in the United States. They were first released in 1988 and are the original table tennis robot!
The Newgy Robo-Pong 2055 is the best-selling robot sold by Newgy and replaces the previous 2050 model. It’s a really smart robot using digital technology and a ‘PC mode’ to enable you to connect the robot to your computer, create drills, and store them in the system.
A great feature of this robot is the double collection net. The first net is much looser which ‘kills’ the balls and causes them to drop straight down.
Many robot nets are way too tight and what ends up happening is the balls hit the net and then shoot back out onto the table. This makes it difficult to keep your eye on the correct ball and can also end up with less balls being recycled by the machine. Newgy have got the net spot on!
Newgy also have a fancy Bluetooth model that connects to an app on your smartphone/tablet (the Robo-Pong 3050XL) but it has really bad customer reviews. If that’s the kind of thing you’re looking for you should get the Power Pong 5000 instead!
Buy a Newgy Robo-Pong 2055…
Again, if you’re going to spend a thousand dollars on a table tennis robot you should probably consider spending a little bit more and getting the Power Pong 2001 instead.
5. iPong Trainer Motion Table Tennis Robot
- Price: $199 or £199
iPong specialise in making great value table tennis robots that sit on top of the table. These kinds of robots need to be refilled manually once you have used up all of the balls.
All of the iPong robots are considerably cheaper than anything else you’ll find on the market. They’re ideally suited to infrequent home use, but I guess they could be used at a club or school too.
The new Trainer Motion model actually has quite a few advanced features. Watch the short video below to learn more…
You may have noticed all of the JOOLA branding in the video above. Well, these iPong robots are sometimes rebranded and called JOOLA Buddy table tennis robots. They are exactly the same.
If you’re looking for a basic table tennis robot and don’t have much money to spend then I would highly recommend giving an iPong robot a try. It’s surely the best robot available for under $200!
Buy an iPong Trainer Motion…
I can’t find the iPong Trainer Motion in the UK, yet. But you can buy the iPong V300…
And there are other table-top robots available, such as the Newgy 1040+ and the Y&T V-981 (also sold as the Practice Partner 20 and the Paddle Palace Table Top Pro). But both are considerably more expensive than the iPong Trainer Motion.
Which is the ‘best’ table tennis robot for you?
In this post, I’ve highlighted five great table tennis robots with a range of prices. But which one should you buy?
If money isn’t an option…
The Butterfly Amicus Prime (or Power Pong 5000) is an awesome piece of kit that is almost like playing against another player! It has so many advanced features and is going to give you the greatest amount of variability in your practice.
Don’t forget that the Power Pong 5000 is virtually identical to the Amicus Prime and currently costs $430 less if you buy direct from PowerPong.org and use my code… BL5000! You’d be mad to pay $430 extra just for the ‘Butterfly’ branding.
If you want something mid-range…
I think the Newgy Robo-Pong 2055 is great value at $999. It’s a really solid robot that can do much of what the Butterfly Amicus Prime can do at less than half the price!
And you can also rest assured knowing that you’re buying the most popular model from the most well-known brand of table tennis robots.
If you’re on a tight budget…
Personally, I really like the newly-released iPong Trainer Motion table tennis robot. At under $200, it’s really great value for money and would make the perfect present for any aspiring player.
With the large number of technique videos now available on YouTube, I can see the possibility for players to pretty much self-teach themselves to play using a basic robot like this.
You can’t beat Power Pong!
That’s how I would summarise the entire table tennis robot market in 2019.
Their high-spec, app-controlled Power Pong 5000 robot really is the best table tennis robot money can buy – and it undercuts the Butterfly Amicus Prime by some margin!
- Plus… get an extra $100 off with my unique code: BL5000
If you’re not interested in all of the Bluetooth/app stuff, the Power Pong 3001 is the robot for you. A top quality robot that you can operate using the control panel.
- Plus… get an extra $100 off with my unique code: BL3001
Power Pong’s mid-range robot, the 2001, should be what you buy if you have roughly $1,000 to spend and want a table tennis robot that actually feels like training with a human opponent.
- Plus… get an extra $50 off with my unique code: BL2001